Dividend checks continue to get fatter in Corporate America, as more companies jack up their distribution rates.

Readers of the Income Investor newsletter can certainly appreciate that kind of thinking. Let's take a closer look at some of the companies that inched their payouts higher this past week.

Let's start with Oracle (Nasdaq: ORCL). Larry Ellison's enterprise software giant is boosting its quarterly dividend 20% to $0.06 a share. The 0.7% yield may not seem like much, but it's a better payout than many of its cash-rich peers that refuse to initiate a distribution policy.

Raytheon's (NYSE: RTN) best defense is apparently to go on the offense. The defense contractor with $25 billion in sales last year is fortifying its disbursements by 15%. Shareholders will now be receiving $0.43 a share every three months. This may seem like a volatile industry given the country's budgetary constraints, but Raytheon has now come through with seven straight years of hikes.

Medicis Pharmaceuticals (NYSE: MRX) is dolling up its rate. The pharmaceutical company specializing in dermatological and aesthetic conditions is increasing its dividend by 33% to $0.08 a share.

Finally, we have BNY Mellon (NYSE: BK) taking advantage of the Fed's decision to allow some of the healthier banks to expand distributions. The banking giant's new quarterly rate of $0.13 a share is a 44% improvement. BNY Mellon is also announcing a $1.3 billion share buyback.

These four companies join banking heavyweight Fifth Third Bancorp (Nasdaq: FITB), phosphate producer Innophos Holdings (Nasdaq: IPHS), and greeting card maker American Greetings (NYSE: AM) in improving their payouts.

Subscribers to the Income Investor newsletter can appreciate the companies sending more and more money to their investors. The newsletter singles out companies that are committed to growing their distributions with market-thumping results.

Want to see what is being recommended these days? Go ahead and give the newsletter service a shot with a 30-day trial subscription. Who knows? Maybe the next thing that will get hiked will be your interest.

Do higher dividends matter to you? Share your thoughts in the comment box below.

The Fool owns shares of Oracle and Raytheon. Motley Fool Alpha LLC owns shares of Medicis. Try any of our Foolish newsletter services free for 30 days. We Fools may not all hold the same opinions, but we all believe that considering a diverse range of insights makes us better investors.

Longtime Fool contributor Rick Munarriz pays attention to yield signs. He does not own shares in any of the companies in this story. He is also part of the Rule Breakers newsletter research team, seeking out tomorrow's ultimate growth stocks a day early. The Fool has a disclosure policy.